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The World Health Organization on Saturday declared the growing monkeypox outbreak to be “a public health emergency of international concern.”

During a preparation in Geneva on Saturday, WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “We have a flare-up that has spread all over the planet quickly, through new methods of transmission, about which we see pretty much nothing, and which meets the models in the International Health Regulations.”

As per Ghebreyesus, in excess of 16,000 instances of monkeypox have been accounted for across 75 nations, with five passings affirmed in Africa. As detailed by USA Today, Dr. Rosamund Lewis, a monkeypox master who works for WHO, shared that the vast majority of all the monkeypox cases beyond Africa were in men and that of those, 98% involved men who engage in sexual relations with men.

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“WHO’s assessment is that the risk of monkeypox is moderate globally and in all regions, except in the European region where we assess the risk as high,” Ghebreyesus said. “There is also a clear risk of further international spread, although the risk of interference with international traffic remains low for the moment.”

He added, “So in short, we have an outbreak that has spread around the world rapidly, through new modes of transmission, about which we understand too little, and which meets the criteria in the International Health Regulations.”

The announcement arrives just a day after the CDC announced the first two U.S. cases of monkeypox in children. “We became aware of these cases just this week, and we’ve been working with the jurisdictions to understand more about these cases,” the CDC’s Jennifer McQuiston told reporters on Friday.

This is the seventh time starting around 2007 WHO has proclaimed a Public Health Emergency of International Concern

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